Gov. Chris Christie had been planning to nominate a longtime adviser, Michele Brown, for a state Superior Court judgeship this year.
But Brown withdrew from consideration on Wednesday, hours after the Observer reported on the nomination, followed by the Inquirer. Instead, Brown said she will remain president and chief executive of Choose New Jersey, a nonprofit she has led since 2015 that focuses on promoting business investment in the state.
“I am honored by the interest of the governor’s office in considering me for the bench,” Brown said in a statement emailed by a spokeswoman. “However, I have decided I would rather continue with the great work we undertake at Choose New Jersey to bring jobs and economic development to our state.”
Christie had filed a notice of intent to nominate Brown for the state’s trial court on April 24, according to records from the state Senate. But a formal nomination was not submitted.
Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen) said earlier on Wednesday that if Brown left Choose New Jersey as Christie prepared to leave office, it would have been a sign that the tax-exempt 501(c)3 group was more of a political vehicle supporting the governor’s career than a serious promotional effort for the Garden State’s business sector.
Christie spokesman Brian Murray did not respond to several requests for comment Wednesday.